the Grey Line are the latest rods in Loop's color concept series. Back in March Goran Andersson told me that these are the rods he's been working on for 30 years. I cast the 13ft and 15ft prototype two-handers at the Kaufmann's clave and immediately asked Goran if I could take them home. They should be available soon--check Loop's web site for more details.
The reel seat looks pretty but does it hold as well as the full aluminum one (with 2 rings) ?
Blanks seem to be available too.
And they are offering a new 1+24 year warranty, I wonder what the details are.
They seem like nice rods, must be approaching the higher end price range. I guess the price difference between Green and Gray is basically the price of the warranty. Can anyone tell what these rods cost, in the States or Europe?
I am curious as to why Loop doesnt really make a spey rod in anything less than a 9 wt in this new line? It seems that they dont really believe in the lighter two handed models if you look through their entire line of rods?
I have gotten information about the new guarantee fra Magnus at Loop.
The 1+24 is their new guarantee covering all series not just the new grey.
The guarantee is a unconditional 1 year guarantee and 24 years against material and manufacturing defects. I just wonder how a defect suddenly should appear after 15 years of use ????
The price will be slightly higher than the green line - about 1.000 swedish kroner for a rod - dont know about the blanks.
About the lighter rods - they make a blue 7116-4. According to my dealer it has been very popular since it came out, however they have had many of them breaking. They have now chaged something (?) and the 7116-4 should be "safe" now
Ok, that 24 years for defects is mainly marketing then..
The reason for not making more light 2-handers is probably because of the fishing conditions and traditions in Scandinavia which remains Loop's main market. Even if the average size of the Atlantic salmon is not always high, on most rivers in Norway, Sweden and Finland there's a reasonable chance to catch 20, 30, 40 lb or even bigger fish (the record rod caught Atlantic salmon in Norway was 36 kg or about 79 lb), so most fishermen wouldn't use a # 7/8 rod. And in Sweden, even the average salmon is pretty big. The famous rivers are also very large.
Personally, I think a lighter rod would be very useful on many smaller Norwegian rivers (and certainly in Denmark). But on those rivers, many visiting anglers like to use single handers because we are not obsessed by this "new" spey casting.
Many locals are still meat fishermen (C&R is making its way here very slowly), so they don't mind jerking out a grilse with a 16' rod while waiting for the big one.. I guess for many guys it's kind of a macho thing too to have a big stick.
I casted the Greyline 13 ft line 9 at a huge twohander test (20 rods 12,5 - 13 ft in total) we conducted for the major Norwegian angling magazine "Alt om Fiske" (the full test will be printed in the May 2003 issue) just before Easter holiday.
The rod is a very nice tool with a soft, but yet powerful action that I believe will be very attractive among long line lovers in GB and North America. However, it also perform well with shooting heads.
Despite I have not casted the green line much, I believe the green line is more of a faster/top action rod than the Grey line.
The rod combines a combination of a very nice look with robustness in rigging, handle including reel seat. Despite the wood, it seems very polite. Also big enough to have space for older type reels which might have too big foot for the more modern reel seats. The rod comes with two identical tips which probably reduces the need for the warranty, which I agree is not very good compared to the life-time warranties offered by many others. The rod is in the most important shops here in Norway, as far as I have seen, and has been at least for a few weeks.
Peter, you are right, personally the Grey line was not my favourite in the test.
Actually, this rod was the one where us two testers had clearly different opinions. My college liked it much better, but neither he gave it top grade, but it came close. As you will also understand, this was a quick test, done during two days, and despite we took time to test with different line types and weights, some rods you need more time to adjust to than others, and this of course reduces the values of tests like this, compared to long time tests where you also get a chance to test in real fishing situations, and also get a better evaluation of durability.
Generally, our impression is that the marked has never been better supplied with good rods. You find rods from very many companies and at different prices, all performing good - excellent.
We set up two former "winners" as "state-of-the-art" rods, rods which has won great reputation in many tests, countries and that are loved by different types of anglers and casters. Those were:
- Loomis GLX 13 ft
- Thomas & Thomas 13 ft
(Note that the test was of shorter rods 12 - 13 ft line 8-9)
We judged these rods still to be extremely good and gave them best grade.
Then among the other rods, we (the two testers), chose two rods each - best rod, and best buy (considering price as well):
- Hardy GEM 13'
- Fenwick Ironfeather 12'6'' (new model)
Best buy rods:
- Redington RedFly 13'
- Guideline LPXe 13' (a Scandinavian brand produced in Asia)
Three rods got top grade (6), those were the two "stateoftheart" rods (GLX 13 and T&T 13) and the Hardy GEM.
We underline that one should not put too large focus on the winners, as I said it have never been so many fine rods on the market, and each caster should choose according to their style and preferences. For instance, we tested a very interesting BW "Parabolic Speycaster" 13' line 9 (I think a new model), which must be a wonderful rod for people casting full lenght lines and who like a rod that flexes down in the handle yet having that power needed.
I should also add that some of the news that have been advertised here in Scandinavia, such as the new G. Loomis Forcelite Speyrods (designed in cooperation by Rajeff at Loomis and the Syrstad brothers in Norway) were not available for the test. (it remains to be seen whether very many will be available this season). Neither Sage were available. I might also add that the Loomis GLX 12'6'' (new last season) had an entirely different action than the beloved GLX 13'. To be honest, the 12'6'' was a disappointment to me. It was a very top action/fast action rod, with a not good enough transfer of energy betweem the relatively soft tip to the stiff bottom part.
The Ironfeather is much more a top action rod than the T&T which I think tend to be among the softer half-action rods on the market here, by far also one of the more successful. So according to how they load and act they are quite different. Yet I like both of them extremely well.
Yes we also had the Techna AV in 12'6'' - an even faster and harder rod than the Ironfeather. I found the Ironfeather the best top-action rod in the test , much better than the AV. I know other AVs are extremely well liked, for instance the 14'. As I mentioned with reference to the GLXs you will not necessarily find the same characteristics in one model in all the others in a series - therefore you should test out the model you think about and not take for granted that a 12'6'' is comparable with a 15' (to the extent 12s and 15s are comparable).
Loop hasn't designed two-hand rods under 7/8 as the majority of their market is Atlantic salmon/steelhead/sea trout anglers who have called for rods in weights 8-10/11. As their North American market grows it is possible that we might see other length/weight combinations but nothing is currently in the works.
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